What is happening today to the Church of France, the pedocriminal scandal within it, the “death” inflicted by so many of its members, for so many years on those who they named daughters and sons and of whom they said in the pulpit that they were children of God, this scandal revealed by the Sauvé report is a radical invitation to a profound conversion.
Radically reconsider the doctrine on sexuality and disembodied spirituality
I would like here, as a priest of this Church that I have been, as a believer that I remain, and first and foremost as a man, to try to give a horizon to this conversion, not a purely spiritual and distant horizon but an embodied horizon. I draw it under the sign of a necessary and hopeful reconciliation between the Church and sexuality. I suggest here the idea, for debate, according to which there is a link, a continuum between the doctrine of the Church on sexuality and the condemnable actions of so many of its members who today shake it. In other words, I think that the horizon of reparation will be lost if the Church does not radically reconsider its doctrine on sexuality and the disembodied spirituality with which it dresses it, as well as the discipline of celibacy that it imposes on priests and of which it is difficult to say that it has always been the rule since the origins of the Church.
→ MAINTENANCE. “It is not because one is a priest that one has no sexuality”
It must do so by revisiting the authors, the periods and the circumstances which built it, by drawing inspiration from the human sciences which will shed new light on it and above all by scrutinizing the “signs of the times”. It happened, during Vatican II, as a reconciliation of the Church with the world, made possible by a revaluation of the theology of creation where the Spirit of God works the consciences and produces the necessary changes. know how to interpret as “signs of the times”. The theology of the “signs of the times” which radiates the constitution Gaudium and Spesmust be resumed. In fact, she never succeeded in irrigating the Church, more exactly in irrigating her hierarchy.
Denounce crime in all institutions
I will begin by firmly revoking the words of those who, to relativize the crime of the Church, say that the scourge of child crime is not the disastrous prerogative of this institution. Yes, it is true that this crime is committed elsewhere than in the Church and that it must be denounced in all the institutions where it has found refuge, starting with the family, but if the Church is a holder, as it does. believes in a universal mission, that of bringing Good News to the world, then this crime is even more odious when it is committed by members of this Church within the framework of missions that it has entrusted to them.
→ TRIBUNE. “By their strategies of dissimulation, the ecclesial authorities have seriously compromised themselves”
I would also say that it will not be enough to identify, judge, and sentence those who commit and cover up such crimes to save the institution. It will not be enough that the Church finally consents to submit to the laws of the State, that she ceases to consider that her own law exempts her from the laws of the Republic, to make amends. It must also equip itself with the means to identify, within it, in seminaries, orders and institutes, those to whom it should not entrust missions as well as those whose authority is misguided. .
Sexual Abuse: Should Catholics Help Compensation for Victims?
Finally, I hear that it is necessary, as far as possible, to repair, to try to repair the existence of those who have suffered such crimes, but, if they are necessary, the compensation funds for victims will not be enough.
The damage is done, money will not repair any of this damage if it does not materialize a recognition of the crime which should push to go even further. One only repairs by committing not to commit any more, and to convert more deeply. What the victims of the Church expect, beyond the recognition of the past evil, is the conversion of an institution which is only such as to carry Good News which it must announce and which obliges us to constantly convert to it.
Sexuality is a constitutive force of humanity
The Church must listen to those who tell her, including within her, that sexuality is a constitutive force of humanity, wanted by the Creator and that, notwithstanding its possible deviations, notwithstanding the so that, like all human acts, it cannot escape ethical reflection, it remains a precious possession of humanity. No, sexuality cannot be legitimate unless it is sublimated in the bonds of marriage, where it is ordered to fertility.
No, masturbation and acts of homosexuality are not inherently bad acts. No, heterosexual acts between consenting persons outside marriage are not seriously contrary to human dignity and cannot be called fornication and considered as “disorders of the will”. No, continence is not the horizon of sexuality!
→ MAINTENANCE. “The ordination of married men risks strengthening clericalism”
Yes, the ordination of married men can be a tremendous chance for the Church to come to terms with sexuality.
The sexuality of our contemporaries, the way in which they speak about it, the freedom with which they want to live it, the responsibility they claim in this area, which is certainly not just a matter of intimacy, must be for the Church “Signs of the times”, marks of a present where the Creator never ceases to act. The Sauvé relationship will only be a sign of the times for the Church if the Church listens to what the contemporary world is telling her about sexuality, if she truly enters into dialogue with it.